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Sales Development Books that Shape Successful Leaders

4 min read
April 20, 2016

Find out the sales development books that helped put Derek Grant on the map!

To build up the sales development community and serve the needs of revenue generating teams around the world, an organization’s VP of Sales must be a fearless leader. Derek Grant joined our ranks last May as Salesloft’s new VP of Sales and is a proving to be a power player in the Atlanta SaaS startup scene.

If you want to grow within your sales organization, you need to be consuming the constant stream of sales content every day. And how you consume content will highly impact your success as a sales leader.

Derek Grant here to talk you through his favorite sales development books that have shaped the leader he is today. Watch the video below to get his advice on becoming a successful VP of Sales through reading sales content.

Video Transcription:

Hey Rainmakers, Derek Grant here. One of the things that every aspiring Vice President of Sales should do is go out and read as many great and impactful books as you can possibly get your hands on. I know that during my time I’ve been able to find a few that really stood out to me. I wanted to bring those to you, so that you might go out and check these out.

The first one is Good to Great. What a wonderful idea, being able to build something that is there to last. The idea of the fly wheel, being able to apply and push and move it slowly and slowly and then faster until you’ve actually got momentum built up in your business. As well as the concept of the hedgehog idea. Just, really, having one thing and being the best at that one thing.

Another book that is really been powerful for me from a sales leader is the book Drive by Daniel Pin. And the concept of Drive is that everyone seeks to have autonomy, but in order to be able to give to people autonomy you have to have accountability. One of the really strong sales concepts in that book is just have a few KPIs if everything is important then really nothing is, so it helps you focus in on what’s most important for your team to be successful.

One that I really, really love is The 4 Disciplines of Execution. It talks about the idea of the check engine light. It simply is a way, and if you benchmark your business, to know if something is, out of sorts. And, if something is out of sorts it may not tell you what’s broken, but it can tell you where to look much like the check engine light under your car. This is a really, really key idea for any sales leader who’s looking at a spreadsheet.

And then finally, Moneyball. I know you’re thinking that doesn’t sound like a business book, but I would argue that it really is. Billy Beane, the GM of the Oakland A’s had a really, really strong idea about hiring. And he wanted to be able to find people who were of a particular type, who had particular skills. And, he would bring them in and with the appropriate application of his systems and his principles, they were able to be to be super successful.

So, as your thinking about business books I’d recommend that being one that is a great read and really a lot of fun. Go out, read all these sales development books. I’d love to hear from you please let me know your thoughts. And best of luck as you continue to close up your month.

Derek’s Tips on What Sales Development Books to Read:

For a more comprehensive look into Salesloft’s internal SDR process, download the second section of our newest playbook trilogy, The Sales Development Playbook: Executing. In this section, we share the ins and outs of efficiently using Salesloft to call and email prospects. Download our free white paper and optimize your sales efforts to start crushing your sales development goals today.

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